How to write a college application essay?
Here’s the questions:
The University values an educational environment that provides all members of the campus community with opportunities to grow and develop intellectually, personally, culturally and socially. In order to give us a more complete picture of you as an individual, please tell us about the particular life experiences, perspectives, talents, commitments and/or interests you will bring to our campus. In other words, how will your presence enrich our community?
If there is additional information you would like us to consider in reviewing your application, please share this with us as well. This is your opportunity to tell us things about yourself that have not been asked elsewhere if you believe they will help us become acquainted with you in ways different from courses, grades, and test scores.
How would you recommend going about answering these? Should I write about all my interests or focus on one topic about me. Should I just focus on how I came to choose my major or something random like things I like to do?
You have to have an attention grabber to begin with. DO NOT!! respond with “I will enrich the community because…” Guarantee you that 98% of the essays they read start out like that and let me tell you how BORING they are. Think about the person who has to read those admissions essays- they must read hundreds of thousands of essays and if the majority start out like that you can only imagine how boring they are.
I say start out by describing yourself in a story like way.
First plan ahead. Get a scrap piece of paper and write out the reasons you want to talk about. Develop the essay from there. Once that’s out of the way, you can work on the hardest part which is the intro to your essay. You want it to be different and the best way to do that is to paint a picture for your reader. Write something that describes yourself in a story-like fashion, such as an anecdote of community service or a job you had. Just write a couple of sentences, for ex: “A colorful poster draped over one of the walls in Ms….’s 1st grade classroom. It was a thank you letter from the class to me for helping them out throughout my senior year of high school. Everyday I arrived in Ms.’s class and I helped struggling students. Not only was I doing something for the community, I was doing something for each of those individual students. This experience has made me a better person, and I know I can bring this and other experiences with me to the university’s community…” go into your essay.
This way of writing grabs your reader immediately and you won’t put them to sleep. Talk about how good you are with other people, what you plan on doing when you get there (clubs you want to join), and things of that nature.
On that second essay, if you can try to incorporate some of what I said earlier about a story somewhere in that one, that would be great. Do stray away from feel-sorry-for-me techniques- “Something I want you to know is that it was a struggle for me to get good grades throughout high school, because my grandma had cancer…” Yes that is sad and no one deserves that, BUT that is not what they want to hear. They don’t want you pulling the sympathy card. Keep it all about you. Like I said before, talk about hanging out with your friends, things you’ve done for your community or job that was above and beyond the call, how your family has helped you, etc.
*Just make it interesting and paint a picture for your reader. Don’t put them to sleep.
*Ask other people to read your essay. Someone you can trust to give you their true opinion- not your mother or father! You don’t want someone who reads something that sucks and tells you it’s awesome. *Have them actually read a copy of it (don’t read it to them), they will more likely catch your mistakes.
*Write it with plenty of time in advanced. If you write last minute you are more likely to submit an error filled essay.
*Make sure if you write the name of the college in your essay you write it RIGHT! (“That’s why I want to go to NYU”)!!! When I went to tour the university I am at now they told us they couldn’t count how many essays they’ve read that had the wrong school written.
*Best way to avoid the mistake said above is write out the entire school’s name instead of the initials. Ex: New York University rather than NYU.
I hope this helped! Good luck!